Access and Borrowing


Outside of law school exam periods and holidays, the Law Library is open to the entire University of California, Berkeley community, as well as attorneys and members of the general public who wish to conduct legal research or to use Federal Depository Library Program (FDLP) materials.


Monday - Friday: (except for holidays and exam periods)
Undergraduates who wish to use the law library collection for research purposes only can apply for an access pass at   Passes are issued on an individual basis. All undergraduate professors who teach courses that have a legal research component should contact regarding class access.

Saturday/Sunday: Closed to undergraduates

Holidays: the Law Library is closed to undergraduates

  • Labor Day (Sept 2, 2019) and Veteran's Day (Nov 11, 2019), Martin Luther King Jr. Holiday (Jan. 20 , 20202), and President's Day (Feb. 17, 2020)

Exam Periods: the Law Library is open to Berkeley Law students only.


The Law Library is primarily a research facility and most of the collection is non-circulating. Some materials circulate to Berkeley Law students and UCB faculty only. If a UCB graduate student needs to borrow from the circulating collection, the student must fill out a special privileges card, obtained from the Law Library Patron Services Desk and present his/her graduate student ID card. There is a 24 hour wait period to verify registration before the student may check out books. Books may be left on the Patron Services Desk hold shelf until registration status is verified. Because the Law Library's on-line circulation system is separate from the main campus' computer, each patron must be entered individually. Circulation privileges cannot be extended to undergraduates, non-UC faculty, attorneys or members of the general public.

Who Can Check Out Books?

  • Berkeley Law Students: This includes JD, LLM, and JSP candidates with a current UCB picture I.D.
  • Berkeley Law Faculty and Lecturers
  • U.C. Berkeley Faculty with current faculty borrowing card
  • U.C. Berkeley graduate students (must register at Law Library)

Borrowing privileges cannot be extended to undergraduates, students from other law schools, attorneys, or the general public. Berkeley Law alumni do not have borrowing privileges, and borrowing privileges cease upon graduation. Exceptions are made for graduate students from the Berkeley campus with a 24 hour wait after registration at the Law Library.

What Can Be Checked Out?

The Law Library is primarily a research library, so much of the collection does not circulate to anyone, even those with regular borrowing privileges. You are welcome to use any of the materials in the library. Listed below are the general circulation rules and loan periods for Berkeley Law students:

  • Permanent and Course Reserve: Four Hours (Library use only)
  • Hornbooks, Nutshells: Four Hours (Library use only), Overnight (Berkeley Law students)
  • Monographs, Treatises: 28 Days

Renewals and Self-Renewals

Books can be renewed in person, by calling 510-642-0621 or by using the online catalog, lawcat. Choose "view your patron record and renew items" and you will be then prompted for you name and student id. Most circulating books can be renewed up to five times, but keep in mind that some books are not renewable.


All books are subject to recall one week after being checked out. Recalled books must be returned immediately or your borrowing privileges (including Reserve Collection books) will be suspended. For reasons of privacy, the names of those who have checked out material cannot be revealed. There are no exceptions to this rule.

What to Do If a Book Is Not On the Shelf

  1. Check the on-line catalog to see if the book is checked out. If it is, go to the Circulation Desk and fill out a RECALL card.
  2. If the book is not checked out, go to the Circulation Desk and fill out a search card.
  3. If you are looking for a journal, case reporter, or statutes volume, try the shelves again in a day or so. These materials are heavily used and often are not reshelved immediately.

Overdue Books

If you do not return your books on time you will lose your borrowing privileges, including the use of the Reserve Collection (outlines, nutshells, treatises, course reserves). Once privileges have been withdrawn, you must clear your record with one of the Circulation Supervisors, weekdays only, between 9AM and 4PM. If books are not returned after the third overdue notice, your privileges will be suspended. If the book is not returned, you will receive a bill charging you for the replacement costs. The moral: RETURN YOUR BOOKS ON TIME! Thanks.

Lending to Other Libraries (Outbound ILL)

Academic and Public Librarians

Interlibrary loans for material from any library on the Berkeley campus are handled through the Main (Doe) Library. Please see their ILL webpage for more information.